Thursday, January 18, 2007

top 16 teams never to win the title since 1980

list of the top 16 teams never to win the title since 1980:

1. Houston, 1983-84. How did these guys not win? Just check out the names, including two NBA Hall of Famers: Akeem Olajuwon, Clyde Drexler, Larry Micheaux, Benny Anders, Byron Franklin, etc. (Way to leave Drexler in the game, Guy Lewis.)

2. Kansas, 1997. Already went into length on the Paul Pierce/Raef LaFrentz buzzsaw that got buzzed by Arizona.

3. Michigan, 1992-93. How many people remember that the Fab Five never actually won a title?

4. Duke, 1999. These guys truly were a step above the rest of the country from the start of the season until the fateful last night when they fell in the Tropicana Dome against UConn.

5. Arizona, 2001. More names: Gilbert Arenas, Richard Jefferson, Jason Gardner, Michael Wright, Luke Walton, Loren Woods. What's interesting here is which guys have made it in the pros and which haven't.

6. North Carolina, 1998. Let's see: Vince Carter, Antawn Jamison, Ed Cota -- and not title. Utah???

7. UConn, 2006. It still feels weird to write that this team lost to George Mason with a Final Four berth on the line. Alums: Rudy Gay, Josh Boone, Hilton Armstrong, Marcus Williams, Denham Brown.

8. Virginia, 1981. Kids today just don't know how dominant Ralph Sampson was at the collegiate level.

9. LSU, 1990. This set of luminaries started the season No. 2 with a roster that included Shaquille O'Neal, Chris Jackson, Stanley Roberts, VernelSingleton, Wayne Sims and Maurice Williamson. So of course, as reader Kenny Morgan, of New Orleans, points out, the Tigers fell to Georgia Tech in the second round of the NCAAs after leading by 25 at the half.

10. Cincinnati, 2000. Oh what might have been had Kenyon Martin not broken his leg in the C-USA tourney against Saint Louis. Perhaps the most frightening team of the 2000s -- Pete Mickeal was a heck of a player, too, and Steve Logan, DerMarr Johnson and Kenny Satterfield made for a sweet supporting cast.

11. Indiana, 1993. A lot of folks in the Midwest still think the Hoosiers would have won it all if Alan Henderson hadn't been hurt.

12. Illinois, 2005. One of the great teams of our time in the team sense. I would have had the Stylin' Illini higher if I didn't think they had already exceeded the sum of their parts so well.

13. St. John's, 1985. Chris Mullin, Walter Berry, Bill Wennington: not a bad team that Louie Carnesecca assembled. The Big East was loaded in '85 with three Final Four teams.

14. Syracuse, 1990. No title with three first-round draft picks (Derrick Coleman, Billy Owens, Leron Ellis) and a really good college player in Stevie Thompson, as reader Kevin Bartner of Atlanta notes.

15. Oklahoma, 1988. Another scary team that was destroying teams until being taken down by Kansas in the title game. Alums: Stacey King, Harvey Grant, Mookie Blaylock, Ricky Grace and former WATN subject Dave Sieger.16. Illinois, 1989. The Flyin' Illini is part of the state mythology by now, and there's a good reason for that.

NBA scouts give early evaluations to college stars

On Aaron Gray, Pittsburgh senior center: "I know a lot of people don't like him, but I do. People don't give him credit for his skills. He's not athletic, but he's really big. He's a legitimate five."

On the Pittsburgh players outside of Gray: "I don't see any definite pros there. Maybe Sam Young in a couple of years, maybe Tyrell Biggs. Maybe [Levance] Fields, though he has to address his body. I talked to a coach who played them, and he said they're really good but they just don't have that one perimeter guy that puts the fear of God into you."

On Hasheem Thabeet, UConn freshman center: "I don't think he can play. I think he's a stiff. He's obviously very long, but he's not a great runner. He doesn't have a high motor at all. It's a given he wouldn't have the technical stuff down, but watch him, he doesn't run gracefully and he doesn't have a lot of energy out there."

On Ivan Radenovic, Arizona senior forward: "Let me tell you something, he's a pretty good basketball player. Everybody's looking at the other kids on that team, but this guy is versatile, he shoots it, he has some toughness inside. I like him a lot more on that team than Marcus Williams, who's on everybody's list but I think he's soft and a little mechanical."

On Mustafa Shakur, Arizona senior point guard: "His decision making is much better this year, without a doubt. His shot still looks terrible; the mechanics change every time I see him. But he's got nice size, and if he keeps making decisions like he's making, he's definitely a draftable guy."

On Josh McRoberts, Duke sophomore forward: "He's just a blend player in our league. He's a really good passer, but he doesn't seem to want the responsibility of being the guy at Duke. Maybe he's incapable of it. Maybe he can be Toni Kukoc, but Kukoc could really make shots to stretch the defense. I guess McRoberts could become a good shooter in time, but right now I don't see it."

On Paul Harris, Syracuse freshman guard: "I really loved him in high school, but there's no doubt he's taken a step backward as far as trying to find his niche in that system. He's an NBA combo guard who will be in the league for sure, but unless he improves his jump shot it's going to be a problem."

On Eric Devendorf, Syracuse sophomore guard: "I don't think Devendorf can play in the league. He has a rep for being a good shooter, but he has the ugliest jump shot I've seen in my life. He has sidespin on the ball."

On Terrence Roberts, Syracuse senior forward: "He'll sneak onto somebody's team because he's so long and active, but the kid has no offensive touch whatsoever. He can't finish a sandwich."

On Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina sophomore forward: "I'm not a big Hansbrough fan. He's an unathletic, fundamentally tough kid who is getting it done on effort and intensity. He plays under the rim. He's not going to be able to do those things as successfully in our league. Somebody's going to take him 15 to 25, but I think his stock will continue to go down."

On Josh Heytvelt, Gonzaga sophomore forward: "He shows you athleticism, he's got versatility. His jump shot is nice. I'd like to see him get down on the block more, but he has shown he has the potential to do that. That's our game."

On Jared Dudley, Boston College senior forward: "He's a three man who can't put the ball down. He has a really good post up game and he's tough. I'd love to coach him in college, but he's not an NBA player. Then again, I said the same thing about Craig Smith, and so far he's proving me wrong."

On Sean Singletary, Virginia junior point guard: "I was disappointed in him the night I saw Virginia play. When the game got into the half-court, he couldn't get by anybody. In the open court, everybody can play in transition, but in the half-court, it was different. That bothered me a little bit."

On Alando Tucker, Wisconsin senior forward: "Tucker definitely has to be rising on people's radar screens. He's a tweener, sure, he doesn't have a true position. Some reporter asked me if he can be another Josh Howard. That's a pretty strong comparison, but Howard wasn't that highly thought of coming out of Wake Forest, so maybe there's something to it."

On Nick Fazekas, Nevada senior forward: "I'm not a big fan of his, but he'll probably play in the NBA because he's long and he can shoot it. But talk about a bad body."

On Julian Wright, Kansas sophomore forward: "Some people think Wright is the truth. I'm OK on him. His shooting scares me, but he is very skilled and very active. The guy I like on that team is Sherron Collins. I tell you what, he's like Quinn Buckner reborn. Stocky, though, makes plays, defends. I was pretty impressed with him."

On Arron Afflalo, UCLA junior guard: "I like Afflalo. He's strong, solid, sort of like a Keith Bogans-type, probably better. He'll play in the league for sure."

On Brandan Wright, North Carolina freshman forward: "He's the best pro on that team without a doubt. He's got great length, he's quick off the floor. He's got to become a better scorer from 12-to-15 feet, and like all these kids he has to get stronger. But he's got all the other attributes you look for. I'd say he's definitely a lottery pick if he comes out."

On Ronald Steele, Alabama junior point guard: "He's a solid player. I think he'll be a good player. The biggest thing with him is, how bad is his injury? Some people say it's a high ankle sprain, some people say he's got tendonitis in his knee. They're not giving out a whole lot of information. He certainly hasn't played anywhere near where he played last year. If that continues, he'll have to come back to school because this is a very deep draft."

On Richard Hendrix, Alabama sophomore forward: "Maybe he's a pro down the road, but not right now. He could end up being like a Chuck Hayes. He's probably a better athlete than Chuck, but Chuck just kind of hung in there and got a shot with Houston and went to the NBDL. A guy like Hendrix might have to go that route because he's undersized."

On Glen Davis, LSU junior forward: "I love him. I think he's going to be special. He'll end up as a really good shooter. You'll be able to run pick-and-pop with him forever. He's going to be like Charles Oakley, but Oakley couldn't pass or dribble like this kid can."

On Chase Budinger, Arizona freshman: "I know a lot of people at Arizona, and I don't think he's coming out. He's good, but he hasn't had a 'wow' year. Shoot, they lost at home to Oregon and he only had four points. Williams is going to leave, Radenovic and Shakur are seniors, so next year Budinger's role will expand. Now, that said, he would still go in the first round, but I'm pretty certain he's going back to school."

On Spencer Hawes, Washington freshman center: "He's really good. He's not the greatest athlete, but he's got tremendous hands and he works really hard. The kid is always moving defensively and offensively. He knows how to play, he's a good passer, he can step off the block. He almost looks ambidextrous with the way he can score around the basket with both hands."

On Brandon Rush, Kansas sophomore forward: "I'm not as big on Rush as some people may be. There's just something about his game I really don't like. I'm worried about his left arm, which was broken when he was young. He's a pretty good athlete, but I'm not sure how good a scorer he can be at our level."

On Wayne Ellington, North Carolina freshman guard: "Every time I've seen him, he just hasn't shot the ball real well. I don't know if he had off nights or what, but I've seen him more than once and he hasn't shot it well yet. He's a very smooth athlete, he can create a shot, but it just hasn't gone in."

On J.R. Reynolds, Virginia senior guard: "He'll have a chance, but I see him as a volume shooter. I'd have a hard time coaching him because he wants to score. He looks to me like he's a two guard in a point guard's body."

On Javaris Crittenton, Georgia Tech freshman point guard: "I want to like him, but I think he's a little selfish. He's definitely a pro because he's got a great body and he's really talented. But he'd make me nervous if he was my point guard. If he plays with other scorers and he's taking shots all the time, that could be a problem. If he could be a Gilbert Arenas-type where he's your point guard but you want him to get you 30, he could do well."

On Thaddeus Young, Georgia Tech freshman forward: "You know, people put him in the same class as Kevin Durant or Greg Oden, but he's definitely not there. When I saw him, I wanted to see Lamar Odom, but I don't see it with Young. He does have upside and will be a good player someday, but right now he can't dribble or pass. He's a first rounder for sure if he comes out, but I don't think he's a difference maker."

On whether there's a chance Oden will return to Ohio State: "There's no way he can go back to school. That's just a smokescreen. He got injured once already. There's just too much money involved with someone like that.

On whether there's a chance Durant will get drafted ahead of Oden: "Not a chance. I'm not drafting small forwards in front of centers. Oden can dominate the game for the next 15 years. Durant is a star, but unless a team already has a young, great center, I don't see it."

My thoughts on the New England vs. Indianapolis Game!

Basically, my thoughts on the game are this:
As you may or may not know, my 3 top favourite teams are the Ravens, the Patriots, and the 49ers. So last weekend, I was obviously cheering for the Pats and the Ravens. Both of them get a shot at Indianapolis who I don't like too much. When New England won in San Diego last weekend, I realized that this coming sunday would be a great matchup once again between the Pats and the Colts. Obviously with the game being in Indy, I know it will be a tough game for Brady and the Patriots.

My Breakdown of the game (a la Ron Jaworski reviewing game tape in between commercials):

Why I think Indy will win:

1. I think the Colts obviosuly have the advantage of being in the dome but also because they play on the turf. I feel like they are more used to playing on it and with Reggie Wayne and Marvin Harrison both, who are great route runners that thrive on playing on the turf, I believe will have a great game on Sunday. It doesn't help that one of New England's leaders, Rodney Harrison will be out with an injury.

2. Indy's Defence has played great in the past 2 playoff games against Kansas City and Baltimore. Now with Bob Sanders back in the lineup as well, it has definetely helped.

3. Joseph Addai has looked more and more impressive late in the season as well as in the playoffs. He gives me flashbacks of his LSU days while playing against the likes of Florida, Auburn, and Tennessee.

4. Adam Vinatieri, nough said!

Why I think New England will win:

1. Brady and alot of the Patriots that won 3 super bowls are still on the team. They are leaders and they know how to win in the playoffs (Vrabel, Bruschi, Brady, Dillon, Seymour, Troy Brown and of course Bill Belichick).

2. New England's Offence is more complex and versatile than Kansas City and Baltimore. They have 2 active and fast tight ends in Daniel Graham and Ben Watson. Former Gators Reche Caldwell and Jabar Gaffney have easily outplayed Wayne and Harrison in both playoff games.
Brady can throw about 35-40 times and they can still win. Maroney and Dillon can run all day and they can grind it out. I feel like they have more ways of attacking you than anyone else.

3. The Pats seem to always have luck on their side, and as evidence in the San Diego game, they always have bounces go their way. But I believe that good teams always get these things go their way. I believe that it will continue for the Pats this Sunday.

Prediction: Pats in a close one. Stephen Gostkowski has looked good and he will be the difference on Sunday. Pats 27-24 Colts!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Romeo Miller is serious about becoming as big a hit in basketball

He's got game, fame
Romeo Miller is serious about becoming as big a hit in basketball as he is in the music and television industries

By Eric SondheimerTimes Staff Writer

January 17, 2007

If there are any shrieking teenage girls clutching camera phones whenever Beverly Hills High is playing a basketball game, they're probably focused on the team's starting point guard, Romeo Miller, rapper, TV star and pop idol.Miller walked into the Beverly Hills gym 90 minutes before game time last week, wearing a red ski cap, and most of the Hawthorne cheerleaders turned in unison toward him."He's a cutie," one gushed.

During the Simi Valley tournament in November, Miller was subjected to requests to pose for photos before games and to sign autographs after.When Beverly Hills Coach Luis Turcios wondered why there were so many people in the stands for a road game against Saugus last month, he was told, "Everyone wants to see a movie star.""We make fun of it," senior guard Daniel Placik said. "We imitate his fans, 'Oh, Romeo.' "Everything Miller does is flashy and cool, from the way he dribbles between his legs and his custom braids to his spotless white headband and sparkling earrings.

If the NBA were looking for a 17-year-old to be its spokesman, Miller could do it. Except Miller wants to be a real pro player, not a promoter.He's so serious about his basketball that he practices constantly, receives private tutoring from former NBA great Nate Archibald and tries to arrange his acting and music schedules around summer camps and travel-ball schedules."I've been playing basketball since the age of 2," he said. "I'm real committed to it. It's a serious game for me."Miller, a junior, started for two years at tiny, private Los Angeles Windward before transferring to Beverly Hills, where he's averaging 17 points and five assists this season.He had a tough decision to make: playing basketball or making movies.

Last season, he left Windward in the middle of the season because of an acting commitment. This season, he turned down a chance to appear in a movie during winter vacation in order to stay with his team."I put everything on hold," he said. "I've got people mad at me."But that comes with trying to juggle entertainment opportunities while trying to live the life of a normal teenager."That's why I'm in school right now," he said. "I've put the whole Hollywood thing behind me right now. This only comes once in a lifetime.

I've got cousins and friends who wished they could have gone to school."Miller, who is 5 feet 11, sat out four games while Beverly Hills confirmed his eligibility after he was home-schooled while filming in New Orleans last year.

The team's record is 9-7, but 8-4 when he has played.Whatever Miller may accomplish in basketball, he won't have any problem dealing with media or fans because his success in music and acting has prepared him for the celebrity treatment.

He recently completed filming the fourth and, perhaps, final season of "Romeo!" his TV series on Nickelodeon about a teenage boy interested in music and basketball. He co-starred with Jessica Alba in the 2003 movie "Honey."His father, rapper, actor and music mogul Percy Miller, known as Master P, is always watching out for him on and off the court.Miller's father had a run-in with his son's former coach at Windward. But he has stayed away from intervening at Beverly Hills, understanding that his son is growing up and learning to make his own decisions."Whatever he wanted to do, I'd support him as a parent," Percy Miller said.

Most kids who end up as famous don't get to be a regular kid."His father got invited to try out for a couple of NBA teams and likes basketball as much as his son."I think it's a great thing," he said. "It's hard work."Miller has been taught by his parents that he can achieve anything he wants as long as he works hard at it. That means he must get A's and Bs in school or his extracurricular activities cease.He attends regular classes rather than being home-schooled because he wants to stay in touch with normal teenage life."It keeps me down to earth and humble," he said.

"That's where a lot of child actors miss out. They're missing a lot of things going on in the real world. I love going to school."He chose to transfer to Beverly Hills because it allows him to face stronger competition in basketball and to blend in with celebrities' sons and daughters already attending the public school."At the beginning, when I first saw him at the high school, it was like, 'Oh my God, it's Romeo,' " freshman Jayanne Aldanese said. "Now it's normal.

"Beverly Hills has more than its share of children from those in the entertainment industry. Wesley Cage, son of actor Nicolas Cage, is on the wrestling team. Other children of producers and directors walk the halls."The celebrities just fit right in," Principal Jay Guidetti said.

"It sounds corny, but there's a real sense of normalcy and no emphasis on celebrity.

"That suits Miller just fine because he's serious about his basketball. He plays with the passion of a neighborhood gym rat and talks with the confidence of an actor who's not reading lines.He understands when he travels to opponents' gyms, many people still see him as a TV star rather than a basketball player."People wonder why I'm out here playing basketball," he said. "This is what I love doing. I was doing it before the music thing, and people don't know it until they see me on the court."Miller's dreams are big, and who can blame him."For my future, I want to play in the NBA," he said when he was a freshman.Don't doubt that Miller can pull it off. As an 11-year-old, when he was known as Lil' Romeo, his rap song, "

My Baby," was ranked No. 1 on Billboard's Hot 100 charts.It included the lyrics:"I'm a little boy but live a big man's life.

By the time I'm 18, I'm not gon be nothin' nice.I'm that R-O-M-E-O.

After high school, I'm goin' straight to the pros.

"There are bound to be many twists and turns in Miller's pursuit of a basketball career, but he seems determined to prove his worth."People know I do this for real," he said.

Nixon disses summer league

Nixon disses summer league
By Steve Springer, Times Staff WriterJanuary 17, 2007
Although he was a key member of the Showtime teams of the early 1980s, Lakers guard Norm Nixon sometimes felt he didn't get the respect afforded superstars like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Magic Johnson.And Nixon wasn't shy about expressing his feelings.One example occurred after he played in the 1980 NBA Finals against the Philadelphia 76ers with a dislocated ring finger on his left hand. The Lakers won the championship that year in six games.When Nixon ran into Lakers head coach Paul Westhead in the team's offices at the Forum during the summer, Westhead naturally inquired about the finger.Still not good, said Nixon, holding up his gnarled digit.I think you should play in the summer league to get your hand back into shape, Westhead said.A veteran on a world championship team playing in the summer league?Nixon responded by telling Westhead, "Why don't you have Kareem pick me up on his way out there."

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Tim Raines HOF?

It's not always instructive to compare Hall of Famers, but Raines stacks up nicely with Lou Brock, the former Cardinals speedster who made it to Cooperstown on the strength of 3,023 career hits and 938 stolen bases. Raines finished with 2,605 hits and 808 steals, but surpasses Brock in a number of areas:

• Raines has a higher stolen base success rate (84.7 percent) than either Rickey Henderson (80.8 percent) or Brock (75.3 percent).

• Raines finished with a .385 career on base percentage, to Brock's .343.

• Raines amassed 1,330 walks and only 966 strikeouts. Brock, in contrast, walked 761 times and struck out 1,730 times.

Raines has some personal baggage to overcome. During the Pittsburgh drug trials in the early 1980s, Raines testified that he kept a gram of coke in his uniform pocket, snorted during games, and made a point of sliding head-first so as not to break the vial. Not exactly a wholesome image there.

Then again, the voters didn't spend much time moralizing about Paul Molitor's early indiscretions with cocaine and marijuana. Raines addressed his problem and rehabilitated his image, and he was a sympathetic figure at the end of his career, selflessly contributing off the bench for two World Championship teams in New York and fighting lupus before his retirement.

Former Montreal pitcher Steve Rogers, now an official with the Players Association, tells people that he played with four Hall of Famers in his career. Gary Carter and Tony Perez are already in the club, and Rogers believes that Dawson and Raines should join them. He cites Dawson for his superb all-around game and ability to carry a club, and Raines for his speed, leadoff skills and knack for affecting a game in so many subtle ways.

Like most former teammates, Rogers raves about Dawson and Raines as team leaders and clubhouse presences.

"When you say their two names at the same time, what I immediately visualize is them putting sanitary socks around their hands, and standing in the middle of the clubhouse in their sliding pants and sandals, slap boxing," Rogers said. "They'd be yelling and woofing at each other while the rest of the team was egging them on."

Slippery slope for tax exempt athletic departments

Jason Kidd

According to a report in the Chicago Tribune, one league GM, upon inquiring about the availability of Vince Carter, was asked by the Nets if he'd be interested in trading for Jason Kidd instead.

While Kidd's off-court life has been a mess lately, he has played some of the best basketball of his career. He had 19 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds in a 105-95 victory over the Pacers yesterday and has seven triple-doubles this season, by far the most in the league.

Kidd has yet to be invited to play for the U.S. national team that will compete in an international tournament over the summer, but if he is, he'll say yes.

Kidd didn't hesitate when asked if he'd accept an invitation to play in the FIBA Americas Championship in Las Vegas from Aug.22 to Sept.2.

"Yes, I would," Kidd said.

The Most Livable Uni Cities

Every couple of months, some magazine or Web site is coming out with the latest bogus list of which cities are the best to live in or have the best quality of life or whatever. And what factors are considered when compiling these assessments? Totally irrelevant criteria such as the food, the weather, crime rates, affordability, school systems, cultural scenes, blah blah blah -- as if anyone cared about that stuff.

Everyone knows there's only one quality of life issue worth considering when you're deciding where to live: How good are the local teams' uniforms?

Face it, if you're gonna be stuck looking at the same teams every day (not just on TV but also in the newspaper, on billboards, etc.), they'd better be easy on the eyes. Or as an acquaintance once told Uni Watch, "You're lucky to live in New York because you get to watch the Yankees, Giants and Knicks all year long. Imagine what it's like for us out here in …" Never mind which city he mentioned. You get the idea.

In an effort to redress this glaring oversight in municipal measurement, Uni Watch has painstakingly devised a system to gauge a city's performance in the crucial category of athletics aesthetics. This system -- known as the uniform numerical index, or UNI -- offers the most accurate barometer of a city's suitability for human habitation.

Here's how it works: First, only cities with at least three major-level sports teams are eligible for a UNI ranking (college and minor league teams don't count -- because there are too many of them and because their uniforms tend to change too frequently anyway). Unfortunately, this means two-team cities such as San Diego, Milwaukee, Charlotte, Buffalo and Nashville didn't make the cut (and are therefore implicitly uninhabitable). But ineligibility can have its advantages: Because Cincinnati has only two teams, for example, it was spared the albatross of having its ranking pulled down by the Bengals.

Assigning teams to specific cities involved a few judgment calls. Should the A's, Raiders, Warriors and Sharks count as San Francisco teams? (Yes.) Should the Nets, Devils and Islanders be filed under New York? (No.) Should the Patriots be assigned to Boston? (Duh.) That sort of thing. After lots of careful consideration, Uni Watch ended up with 20 U.S. cities plus Toronto meeting the three-team standard.

A rigorous, highly scientific set of standards then was employed to rate the uniforms of each team in the 21 cities. The ratings, on a scale of one to five stars, roughly translate to the following expressions of civic pride (or angst, as the case might be):

= "Man, is this a great city or what? Why didn't we move here sooner?"
= "Hey, maybe that broker's fee wasn't so outrageous after all."
= "I really like it here. But you know, I like lots of places."
= "I pay property tax, school tax and garbage tax just so I can look at this?"
= "Call the movers -- we're leaving tomorrow."

After adding up a city's ratings and dividing by the number of teams, Uni Watch ended up with the city's average score. Because a uniform can be enhanced or diminished by its surrounding context, especially on TV, a stadium/arena bonus (for particularly attractive settings) or penalty (for domes or artificial turf) of as much as one point was applied to certain cities. The average score, plus this bonus or penalty, yields the city's final UNI, destined to become the key yardstick of urban stature.

OK, enough preliminaries. Uni Watch hereby presents America's five best-dressed cities, any of which would make a fine home base for a budding sports aesthete:

1. Boston
Even if you have trouble understanding the local accent, you'll find that the Red Sox (), Celtics (), and Bruins () are all speaking of the universal language of aesthetic excellence. If only the Pats () hadn't traded in Pat Patriot for Flying Elvis, Beantown would've had a near-perfect score. Toss in a bonus point for Fenway Park (which makes every team look better), and you've got America's best-looking sports city. UNI Score: 5.25

2. Chicago
OK, so the weather occasionally can get a tad balmy in the summer and a mite brisk in the winter, but who cares about that when you have such excellent uniforms to look at every day? The Cubs' design () is a timeless classic; the White Sox () are firmly ensconced in MLB's upper echelon; the Bears () and Blackhawks () are among the best-looking teams in their leagues; and the Bulls (), although unspectacular, are never painful to look at (visually, at least). Uni Watch originally was going to award a bonus point for Wrigley Field, but let's make it half a point instead because many fans don't even get to see all those afternoon games. UNI Score: 4.8

3. San Francisco and vicinity
San Francisco treat, indeed. If we stuck to MLB and NFL, the Bay Area might have nabbed the top spot: Giants (), A's (), Niners (), Raiders () -- not a dog in the bunch. The same can't be said, alas, for the Warriors () and Sharks (). But a half-point bonus for visually alluring AT&T Park helps, as does an additional quarter-point bonus for Niners coach Mike Nolan's successful efforts to bring the suit back to NFL sidelines. UNI Score: 4.33

4 (tie). Los Angeles
No surprise that a city obsessed with looks would field a good-looking set of teams. L.A.'s uniforms are led by the timeless Dodgers () and Lakers () and the modern classic Angels (), with the Clippers () and Ducks () holding down a respectable middle ground. Unfortunately, not even a crew of L.A.'s best plastic surgeons can help the Kings (, but a half-point bonus for Dodger Stadium helps to lessen that pain. UNI Score: 4.0

4 (tie). Pittsburgh
You can look at all those Brillo boxes at the Warhol Museum if you want, but the Steel City's real artworks are on the field and the ice (and, OK, at Primanti's). Start with the Pirates (), who've been so bad for so long that it's easy to forget how sharp their unis are (dig that unique number font). Then you have the Steelers (), whose uni design is so understatedly simple that it's easy to take it for granted. Add a skating penguin () to the mix and you've got a city Uni Watch would be proud to call home. UNI Score: 4.0

Those are the top five. Uni Watch's full breakdown of all 21 cities shapes up like this:

City MLB NFL NBA NHL Average Bonus/
1. Boston Red Sox
4.25 Fenway Park (+1) 5.25
2. Chicago Cubs

White Sox
4.3 Wrigley Field (+0.5) 4.8
3. San Francisco
Bay Area


3.58 AT&T Park (+0.5), Mike Nolan's suit (+0.25) 4.33
T4. Los Angeles Dodgers




3.5 Dodger Stadium (+0.5) 4.0
T4. Pittsburgh Pirates

4.0 None 4.0
6. New York Yankees


3.83 None 3.83
T7. St. Louis Cardinals

4.17 Edward Jones Dome (-0.5) 3.67
T7. Cleveland Indians

3.67 None 3.67
T7. Seattle Mariners

3.17 Safeco Field (+0.5) 3.67
T10. Philadelphia Phillies
3.5 None 3.5
T10. Houston Astros

3.5 None 3.5
12. Detroit Tigers
Red Wings
3.88 Ford Field (-0.5) 3.38
T13. Miami Marlins
3.0 None 3.0
T13. Washington Nationals
3.0 None 3.0
T15. Dallas Rangers
3.38 Texas Stadium (-0.5) 2.88
T15. Denver Rockies
2.88 None 2.88
17. Toronto Blue Jays

Maple Leafs
3.17 Rogers Centre (-0.5) 2.67
T18. Phoenix Diamondbacks
2.5 None 2.5
T18. Tampa Devil Rays

3.0 Tropicana Field (-0-5) 2.5
20. Atlanta Braves
2.88 Georgia Dome (-0.5) 2.38
21. Minneapolis Twins
2.63 Metrodome (-1.0) 1.63